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       11th  JANUARY  2016

   David Barrie, the Speaker, made a welcome return to Areley Kings W.I. and this time gave a very lively and fascinating talk, illustrated with excellent slides, on  “The Other India – Off the Beaten  Track’.  In this vast country of many great contrasts he mainly spoke on the simple life of the farming community in the rural areas , where time is of no importance.

 In the absence of Patsy Anderson, the President, the meetings was led by
 Cyndy Firth, Vice President.  She gave the sad news of the death of Dorothy Birchall, a loyal member for many years.

Cyndy announced that the donations to Acorns Hospice, in lieu of Christmas Cards raised  over £60.  She reminded members that the New Year Lunch will be held on 18th January at Wharton Park Golf Club, when the Annual Denman College Bursary will be drawn.  A Coffee Morning will be held at Ann Freeston’s home on 15th February, to raise funds for Kidderminster Hospital League of Friends.  Cyndy also announced some Spring Federation events  including the “Joseph Singing Day” at  Hanley Swan Village Hall and a Course on Preserves to be held at W.I.House.     

The competition for a favourite Tea Cup and Saucer was won by Jan Taylor
with Lin Edwards second.

The next meeting will be held in Areley Kings Village Hall, on Monday 8th February at 7.30 p.m. when Robin Hill will speak on “A Land Army Girl Remembers”.  The Competition will be for a photo from World war 1 or World War 2.

(260 words)       Mary Wehner. 

    The Women’s Land Army in World Wars One and Two was the subject of Robin Hill’s 
Talk at the February meeting of the Areley Kings W.I.  He spoke of girls in World War 2 as young as 17 from towns and cities having to adjust to an outdoor life in remote areas.    Some girls worked in the fields while others milked the cows twice daily, kept the dairies clean and also delivered the milk in horse-drawn floats.  It was a hard life and their pay was 28 shillings a week with 14 shillings deducted for keep.  After the war many Land Girls did not return to their home towns.  In fact a good number became farmers’ wives.
 Patsy Anderson, the President, reported on the success and enjoyment of the New Year 
Lunch held at Wharton Park.  The Draw for the Annual Denman College Bursary was made at the Lunch and was won by Linda Lane.
 The new Breast Unit in Worcester is due to open on 3rd March and three members were invited to attend a preview.  They were impressed with the buildings, furnishings and facilities, and felt we are fortunate to have such a Clinic in Worcestershire. 
Patsy announced that Patchwork Classes are being arranged under Brenda Banner’s tuition.  Eight members wished to join the course.
Speaking on future events Patsy said that an Outing is being planned to Redditch Needle Museum.  A Street Party to celebrate the Queen’s 90th Birthday is planned for 12th June and a Village Hall Lunch to celebrate Areley Kings W.I’s 90th birthday on 2nd November.  Areley Kings is also hosting the Group Meeting on 23rd September.
 The Competition for a photo from either World War was won by Pam Eves with Lin Edwards and Jacki Clark second and third.
 The next meeting will be held on Monday 14th March at 7.30 p.m. at the Village Hall when Jo Rush will speak about Abberley Hall and Clock Tower.

(330 words)       Mary Wehner 

Our speaker this month was Jo Roach, an Historian specialising in the History of Abberley Hall and Clock Tower, a most fascinating subject relating our local history and so enthusiastically presented.
The history of Abberley Hall dates back to the Medieval Period. The Hall was previously known as a Lodge and has had numerous owners through the centuries until Abberley Hall was acquired in 1916 by a Blackheath School Headmaster, Gilbert Ashton for £10,000, hence Abberley Hall School as we know it as today.  One common link to all Abberley Hall residents through the centuries for many household celebrations was the Hundred House Hotel, Whitely which dates back to the 17th Century. The vote of thanks was given by Pat Gale.
Many thanks to Ann Bailey for organising our skittles team, the ladies won 4 out of 5 matches this season.  Well done everyone!
Our Trip next month will be to the Forge Mill Needle Museum, Redditch. A successful coffee morning last month raised £165 for the Kidderminster Hospital League of Friends, our sincere thanks to Anne Freeston for hosting the event and to all the ladies who donated cakes.
Preparations are underway for the Queen’s 90th Birthday celebration in June and also the Areley Kings WI 90th Anniversary celebration which will be held in November.
The winners of this month’s competition were: First place Katie Reid, second place Pam Stubbs and Third place Pam Eves. Well done ladies.
Our next meeting is on April 11th at 7.30pm.The speaker is David Chatterley: a talk on ‘Victorian Brass Needle Cases’. The competition will be A Decorative Pin Cushion. Visitors and new members are most welcome, just come along.  


Our speaker this month was David Chatterley, an avid collector. David gave a talk on the history of Brass Needle cases and displayed some of his collection which dates back to the mid 1800’s when Brass Needle Cases were manufactured in Redditch. Drapers Shops offered the Needle Cases for sale, the cost then was 11 shillings or more (55p), affordable only for the more affluent customers. Brass Needle Cases soon became very fashionable within Victorian Society, particularly among Victorian Sewing Groups where they could flaunt their Needle Cases

The competition this month was ‘a Decorative Pin Cushion’, the winners were, first: Dallas Henderson, second: Kate Reid, third: Margaret Cook.
Our next meeting will be May 9th 7.30pm. Entertainment will be members contributions, ‘Who am I’ and the competition will be a flower display in a Jam Jar or Milk Bottle. Visitors and new members are always welcome. 


Patsy Anderson President welcomed everyone to the meeting. In the absence of a speaker we held an art and crafts display and a ‘Who am I’ game. A display of member’s paintings, patchwork, knitting and crochet, results of workshops and art groups, the exhibits were much admired. The ‘Who am I’ game: members wrote out memorable events from their past, naughty or otherwise, everyone had to guess who it was. From children’s guilty secrets involving ponds, baby brothers, over-age high rise thrill seeking and attending royal receptions, it was most revealing and highly amusing.

WI resolutions were discussed: ‘Appropriate care in hospital for people with dementia’ was voted for unanimously, although it was felt that other issues of dementia also needed addressing.

Our intrepid walking group braved the recent hail storm on a local walk to be rewarded by a very pleasant afternoon when the storm ceased. Areley Kings WI Skittles Team will be resuming next season under the skilful leadership of Ann Bailey.

The recent visits to the Needle Museum Redditch and Malvern Theatre were very much enjoyed by members. A visit to Ralph Court Gardens is organised for May 26th, and a visit to Waddesdon Manor is organised for July 13th. Members are reminded that entries for an AKWI flag should be ready for our next meeting.

This month’s competition was Flowers in a Jam Jar or Milk Bottle. First place Ann Lakin, Second place Faye Gillmore, Third Place Mollie Long.

We will be meeting again May 9th 7.30pm. Our speaker will be Tracy Jacob: Poetry ‘Dots Ditties’. The competition is an original short poem. Why not come along, all visitors and new members will be made very welcome.


The Meeting was opened by President Patsy Anderson. In honour of the Queen’s Birthday we had a lovely table display of flags and a very distinctive Royal themed flower arrangement presented in a uniquely handmade decorated vase by Carla Walters.
Our delightful Speaker Tracey Jacob presented some of her hilarious poems reflecting events centred on her life. Recitals of some of her poems such as ‘Ladies who Lunch’, ‘The Domestic Engineer’, ‘Nil by Mouth’, ‘No Pain No Gain’, and many more were all highly entertaining and very amusing involving topics that our members understood very well. Tracey’s poems can be found in her poetry book Dot’s Ditties, Proceeds from book sales are donated to The Haven at Worcester Breast Unit.

The visit to Ralph Court Gardens last month was an absolute delight. There will be an organised walk 27th June meeting at 11am at the Lock Inn at Wolverley, all are welcome. Our Summer Garden Party will be held 29th July, tickets are now available. WI Calendars and Diary’s are now available; please see your local WI group to place an order.
The competition this month was an Original short Poem: first place Betty Bickerton; second place Cherry Greaves; third place Margaret Cook. Tracey read out all 5 entries, each of them an inspiration to try our hand at poetry.
Our next meeting will be July 11th at 7.30. The speaker will be Sarah Coley giving a Sugarcraft Demonstration. The competition will be A Decorated Cupcake. Visitors are always most welcome, check us out on 


Patsy Anderson President warmly welcomed members to this month’s meeting. The speaker was a Sugarcraft artisan Sarah Coley; she displayed some of her amazing cakes and decorations. Sarah has been working professionally in Sugarcraft for a relatively short time and has some truly unique skills in the art of Sugarcraft. Members were able to try their hand at making their own Sugar Teddy Bear decoration with aid of Sarah’s expert help; each Bear was totally unique and was lovingly boxed for us to take home.
This month’s walk in Wolverly was led by Lesley Smith and Ann Bailey. The walk began and ended at the Lock Inn: they went along the canal, through a nature reserve to Wolverly Church 

Members were invited to design a Flag for our WI group in Areley Kings; the winning design was entered by Margaret Cook. The Skittles award for the highest score of the season went to our very capable Skittles Captain Ann Bailey.

Some Archived limericks from past members appertaining to Tennis were recently discovered, Patsy Anderson read them out to the group and they were so funny!

A Summer Garden Party will be hosted by Paula Smith July 29th, please contact Jacki Clark, Secretary if you would like more Information.
The competition this month was a Decorated Cupcake: first place Carla Walters, second place Ann Shortall and third place Margaret Cook.
Our next meeting will be held Sept 12th 7.30pm. In place of a Speaker it will be A Trip Down Memory Lane, and will be a Social Evening with a Supper.   The Competition will be A Decorated Coat Hanger. Visitors are always very welcome.
For any further information see

Areley Kings WI

President Patsy Anderson warmly welcomed members to the meeting. It was decided to hold an evening of reminiscence: ‘A Trip down memory Lane’. Kate Reid produced a short film using donated photographs. The film opened with a gorgeous field of Sun Flowers to an amazing musical rendition of Jerusalem and concluded with a sound track of a truly unique BBC recording featuring a cast of WI members. Member’s photographs were featured showing Areley Kings over many years up to the present day including the recent planting of 100 daffodil bulbs along the grass verge in front of the Village Hall.  Many historical Photo albums and Meeting Minute record books were available to look through, it really was fascinating.  This was followed by a delicious supper of cheese and crackers, Jacki Clark’s scrumptious Black Forrest Gateau and Patsy’s very famous Pimms ... yummy.

We held our Summer Garden Party in July and despite the threatening clouds the afternoon was a great success. Our thanks to Paula Smith for volunteering her beautiful home and garden for the event and thanks also all members who contributed in any way.

The Group meeting this year will be held at Areley Kings Village Hall on September 23rd 6.30pm.  The speaker will be The Yellow Hat Lady; it should be a very entertaining evening.

This month’s competition was a decorated coat hanger: First place Margaret Cook, second place Pam Eves.

Our speaker for October will be David Berry giving a talk on Military Mistakes and Misjudgements. The competition will be A Homemade Poppy. Our next meeting will be Oct 10th 7.30 pm, visitors and new members are always very welcome.

 For any further information please visit


President Patsy Anderson welcomed members to the meeting and then proudly presented our new Areley Kings Banner to everyone. The Banner was made by Brenda Banner and designed by WI member Margaret Cook.

The Speaker this month was David Berry ‘Military Mistakes and Misjudgements’. David gave a very enthusiastic talk detailing past Military battles. The common denominators for the battles were incompetence, inadequate equipment and poor communications which resulted in high casualty rates. One well known battle was the ‘Battle of the Somme’ 1st July 1916, where there were 21,000 casualties in the first 30 minutes of the battle and was subsequently reported by the Generals as ‘A favourable day’. A very interesting talk much enjoyed by the members. The vote of thanks was given by Mary Arden Davies.

Areley Kings WI entry for the Elizabeth Bell Challenge was made by Kate Reid, a 2 minute digital story depicting WI life within our local community. Kate’s entry has been selected to go forward representing Worcester Federation at National level, Good luck and well done Kate.

Forest Group Meeting was hosted by Areley Kings last month and was a huge success, 68 members from the various Forest Groups attended. Arrangements are now in place for our 90th Birthday celebrations 2nd Nov, catering by Hop Pole, Bewdley. The speaker will be David Rushforth talking about life on HMY Britannia.

This month’s competition was a Home Made Poppy. The winners were: first place Alison Hastie, second place Katie Reid, third place Ann Lakin.

Our AGM will be held at next month’s meeting on Mon Nov 14th at 7.30pm. The competition will be a themed tea tray: ‘Outer Space’. Why not come along, new members and visitors are always very welcome.
For any further information ple
ase visit


President Patsy Anderson opened our AGM meeting welcoming Pat Jewkes our County Adviser and members. During the meeting, regretfully some committee members resigned, Margaret Cook, Jacki Clark and Patsy Anderson. Patsy’s time as President has been a very prestigious and eventful 3 years, WI centenary, AKWI 90th birthday and many numerous events. Jacki Clark’s position as secretary has been no less arduous supporting Patsy.  Anne Freeston gave the vote of thanks to the retiring committee members thanking them all for their tireless devotion to their duties within the WI.

In October the WFWI held their Annual Council Meeting in Malvern. The competition entries were of an exceptionally high standard: of 5 categories AKWI attained 2 first, 2 third, 1 highly commended, and the Craft Award. The Best of Show award went to AKWI for Carla Walter’s sugar craft entry. Congratulations to Carla Walters, Margaret Cook, Pamela Eves, Lorrie Parfitt, Dallas Henderson, Alison Hastie, Patsy Anderson, and Ann Lakin.

AKWI’s 90th birthday celebration luncheon was held Nov 2nd at Areley Kings Village Hall, 41 members and WI dignitaries attended the event. The superb birthday cake was made by Patsy Anderson and decorated by Carla Walters. Our speaker David Rushforth gave a fascinating talk on HMY Britannia, catering by Hop Pole Bewdley, and a beautiful floral display by member Margaret Cook depicting the Queens 90th birthday.  This was a truly memorable event.

The competition this month was:  A themed tea tray ‘Outer Space’. The winners were first place Carla Walters and Ann Lakin, second place Pam Eves and Alison Hastie, third place Pauline Hadwell.

Our next meeting will be Dec 12th 7.00pm (please note our new winter starting time). The Speaker will be Dave Moylan: Comedy, Music and Magic. The competition will be a Handmade Christmas Card.

A warm welcome will always be extended to visitors and new members.  Why not check our website:

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